What's Lies Beneath—Can a Book Cover Sell What's Inside?
I'm loving my book covers. The first one was for Take My Husband, Please, designed by Cory Clubb of GoBold Designs, who did an excellent job; and the second cover, for Gillian Parker is Dead, was created by Louis Rakovich of Indigo Forest Designs. Louis tweaked TMHP a tad so the look of both novels would complement each other. I think they portray well the sassy and fun tone of the stories within the romantic comedy genre. And they make me smile.
I liked working with Louis so well, I asked him to work on a third cover for my Fragrant Liar collection of favorite blog posts, which will be available in April, and my upcoming paranormal series, the first of which will be released in October.
How important is a cover? It's your first impression on a potential reader, and you may not get a second one. I admit, I'm totally superficial and make personal selections based on how much the cover appeals to me. Short of having the whole world five-star a next-big-thing book, if it has a cover that looks unprofessional or like your bored neighbor designed it, I'm not likely to pick it up.
The cover should engender trust that what's inside will be good and worth the time and money you'll invest in it. That's not fail-proof, obviously. I've picked up books with great covers that I later put down because what's inside didn't live up to the hype, but a sexy cover (and synopsis) can get me to the shopping cart.
Joel Friedlander has an entire website, the Book Designer, devoted to the dos and don'ts of professional book covers and formatting your book. You can see how covers compare by checking out his monthly e-cover design awards. And if you have any doubts, here's Joel's article on how publishers fail at making cover designs.
I hope you like my covers (and what's inside). Let me know your thoughts in the comments.